If you’ve ever ran a business as a solopreneur, you’ll know first hand just how difficult it is without having to worry about your Social Media, too. If you’re relating here, have you ever found yourself wondering wth you’re doing and doubting your every move online, unable to identify if you’re putting your energy and efforts in the right places?
Well, fret never. We’ve broken down how you can efficiently and effectively manage your Social Media as a business owner / solopreneur in six simple steps below.
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Firstly, what exactly does social media involve?
With that in mind, let’s get on to the a step-by-step guide to managing your own social media platforms.
Step 1: Put a Social Media strategy together
“If you fail to plan, you plan to fail.”
Nothing in business works without a well-thought out plan and a properly formulated strategy, so that’s where you’ll need to begin. The first step is running an audit of your Social Media – so what does that include?
- An audit of your presence on all networks, including followers, how often you post, engagement rate etc.
- Are all of your profiles optimized?
- Are your biographies filled out and well presented?
- Are you exclusively using high quality photos?
- Are your profile images and biographies consistent across all of your platforms?
- Are your social handles consistent?
Find the right platform
Once you have an understanding of your current presence, the next step is to decide on the right platforms for your Social Media efforts. You’ll need to ensure that the platforms your business is on actually make sense for the brand – the most important question is whether your target customer or client is actually hanging out on that network. For example, a restaurant (B2C) wouldn’t need to focus all their efforts on LinkedIn (B2B), but a business coach (B2B) most certainly should be heavily investing in the platform.
This all comes along with understanding your brand and knowing who your audience is, and most importantly, where they’re at. No two social platforms are the same, so be sure to implement best practices from the get go so that you can get the most out of your efforts in terms of followers, engagement, leads and revenue. Where would one find this sort of information as far as where their audience might be online? You can get your Google on, watch some videos on YouTube (have you subscribed to our channel yet?), purchase an online course, and if you’d rather have someone else do it for you, we create customized, comprehensive strategy guides for businesses who are capable of running their social on their own but just need a roadmap to show them the way. We call it the Ultimate Social Media Playbook, and you can learn more about it here.
Perform a competitor analysis
The final part of your strategy would be to perform a competitive analysis – not exactly an old school SWOT but you’re going to want to stalk what others in your field are doing online. You can get inspired by what they do well, and ensure you avoid what they’re doing wrong. Looking at other businesses not in your field is also beneficial to getting a better idea of what can work online – generally most of the best inspiration will come from another industry altogether.
Step 2: Batch your content
Once you’ve developed your social media strategy, you should now have an idea of what kinds of visuals you’ll be sharing. You may have decided your feeds could use some product shots, lifestyle photography, short videos, GIFs, quotes or shoppable posts, and that brings us to the next step.
With the content types in mind, you don’t want to spend every day trying to find images or videos to share – so what do you do? Batch them in one sitting. Choose a date and plan for a content creation session where you’ll have all the necessary tools, products, and people you need to leave with at least 30 unique photos (or pieces of content). Thirty (well, 31 to be safe) images would cover you for up to one post per day for a month, which would be our optimal number.
For something that’s more graphic heavy like quotes, batch those too. Sit down and design 4-8 in one sitting so that you can have them ready to go whenever you’re scheduling your posts. Our favourite – and free – tool for design is Canva.
Step 3 – Create a Social Media Content Calendar
If you haven’t already realized, you can’t just wing social media – you have to have a plan and you have to post with intent. Social Media Content Calendars save you a ton of time because they ensure you’re not scrambling at the last minute to find anything (something!) to post because you suddenly realize you haven’t posted in three days. Instead, a Content Calendar gives you a clear picture of your schedule, from a week to a month or even longer, of any notable dates ahead and of what you need to ensure you have content for. This is also key for those fun Social Media “holidays” or days of the week that may be relevant to your business. They’re often great to jump in on for extra brand exposure, for example, creating a unique post for #NationalAvocadoDay if your business is a health food restaurant or a burrito chain.
Step 4 – Find the right tools
As with any profession, Social Media management can either be difficult or extremely simple all based on which tools you use. There are a number of tools that help you visually plan, schedule and distribute content, but also track and reply to comments in one place so that you never miss a customer inquiry.
Some of our favourite tools that do just that: Planoly for visual planning; Sprout Social for higher end, complex, robust scheduling community management, and reporting; and Buffer for a more budget-friendly management system.
If you want to learn more about prepping and distributing your Social Media content efficiently, watch our video on how to schedule one week of content in only one hour, or check out this blog post.
Step 5 – Allocate time for engagement
We say this all the time – Social Media efforts are essentially all for nothing if you are not proactively engaging with your community, your followers and others on the platforms. Every single day you need to set time aside to engage via browsing relevant hashtags, following key accounts and answering questions from followers who are being ignored on competitors profiles. This type of engagement is how you increase discoverability, get into organic conversations with potential followers, clients and customers, and how you grow your account, increase brand awareness and influence the perception of your brand online.
Step 6 – Set your goals
“You can’t manage what you don’t measure.”
Most other areas of your business are bound by goals and KPIs, so why wouldn’t this apply to Social Media? Successful entrepreneurs and high achievers always set goals to have a better understanding of their long-term vision for their company, while using it as fuel and a motivator for success.
Being that Social Media is relatively new in the scheme of things, knowing how to measure it can be a little tricky. Some common social goals you may want to track include:
- Growth – how many followers you’re adding month on month
- Impressions – how many times is your content being seen
- Reach – how many individual users are seeing your content
- Engagement – likes + reactions, comments, shares, saves and messages
- Link clicks – how many clicks are you getting on any links you share, specifically your website, your other social profiles and any landing pages.
Those are all the steps required to help you manage your own social media – solo. If this all sounds a little overwhelming to you, feel free to ask us specific questions in the comments below or via email. And as we mentioned earlier, if you’d prefer to have some professional help with your game plan, chat with one of our experts about creating a customized Social Media Playbook with strategies, tools, tips, tactics, and resources including customized content categories, hashtag banks and more.